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Medion Erazer X6813 15.6″ Laptop Review

Our experiences with the Medion Erazer X6813 have been disappointing. On paper we were expecting great things, after all it is hard to go wrong with a formidable combination of Core i7 2630QM processor paired up with Nvidia GTX460M discrete graphics.

Initial impressions were positive, as the machine is well finished and looks quite expensive. After a few hours we realised however that the beauty is literally just skin deep. Firstly, the keyboard is nothing better than just acceptable. It would not be a machine I would want to use for business duties, as neither keyboard or touchpad make the experience enjoyable long term.

When compared to the slightly more expensive Lenovo ThinkPad X1, it pales dramatically. Unfortunately the X6813 isn’t supplied with a backlit keyboard either, even though there is a ‘light’ button. Bizarrely, this light button turns on two glowing side panels on the machine, rather than anything remotely useful in the real world. Before you ask, they aren’t bright enough to light up the keyboard in a dark room either.

The 15.6″ screen didn’t impress me… while only slightly reflective it has a poor contrast level, lacks overall brightness and the unbalanced colour saturation makes it difficult to use as a photo editing machine. It may have a high 1080p (1920×1080) resolution, but I wouldn’t want to use it for anything remotely serious.

The onboard sound system should pack a punch, after all Medion include a subwoofer to help enhance low frequency response. Sadly, it fails to improve the sound quality, and music sounds thin, even distorting at a modest volume.

The biggest problem I have with the Erazer X6813 however is the software installation and operating system configuration. I have never seen a manufacturer include an quality Intel 80 GB Solid State Drive then decide to partition it in a manner that basically excludes the user from accessing more than 33GB under normal circumstances. I appreciate the added protection by including a recovery partition, but why not use the mechanical 750GB drive in a partitioned state for this duty? Or just include a mirrored dual layer DVD disc and forget about partitioning entirely?

An inexperienced user will not know how to resize this boot partition or manually how to install programs to the secondary D: drive to leave some room on the boot drive. I still can’t get over how this managed to creep into a production model, unless it was an isolated incident. I mentioned this to the Medion PR team weeks ago, holding off on publication for as long as possible. Sadly I am still waiting on an official response, so your guess is as good as mine.

The Intel Core i7 2630QM processor is without question the strong point of this system, however the Erazer X6813 fans have to work hard to maintain good internal thermal dynamics, a common problem from pairing up a smaller chassis with such a high end mobile processor. The end user has to deal with considerable noise due to this, and a hot chassis when tasked hard.

Battery life is a strong aspect of the design as we managed to achieve over 5 hours under general, light duties. When loaded, it still managed to run for over 3 hours before a recharge would be required. The Nvidia GTX460M is a solid gaming card, although I prefer the GTX560M due to improved Direct X 11 performance.

Sadly, I have to give this machine a thumbs down, there are too many problems for Kitguru to recommend it to our audience.

You can buy it directly from the Medion store, over here.

Pros:

  • Great battery life.
  • Intel Core i7 2630QM.
  • Looks good.
  • 1080p resolution.
  • plenty of ports.
  • decent gaming performance.

Cons:

  • Screen is poorly backlit, lacks contrast and suffers from colour inconsistencies.
  • Keyboard and touchpad are average.
  • Sound system is poor.
  • Gets hot and loud under load.
  • only 4GB of 1333mhz memory.
  • old Nvidia driver installed.
  • light switch doesn’t support the keyboard, just two lights at the side of the machine.

Kitguru says: Business users should look at the Lenovo Thinkpad X1 which is only slightly more expensive and is significantly better. Gamers should look at the recent Asus or MSI machines, around £1,000.

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Rating: 6.5.

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